Your Gift Can Change a Leading Cause of Childhood Disability

December 01, 2016

If you knew you could end one of the major causes of childhood physical disability in the world, would you sign up?

Caroline is walking through her Maasai village in rural Tanzania with baby Ian on her back, a blanket carefully hiding his legs. She talks of a limitless future for her son – a future that seemed completely out of reach when Ian was born.

A joyous moment turned to fear and worry, when the neighbor attending to Ian’s home birth noticed the baby’s twisted feet as she cut the umbilical cord.

Ian is oblivious to the risks he faces as a baby born with clubfoot in a low-income country. A happy 6-month-old just starting to eat solid food, he watches his older siblings play soccer with a ball they made out of pieces of plastic and rubber wrapped together.

Ian is one of the lucky ones. Caroline was referred to a MiracleFeet-supported clinic in Usa River when she stopped by a local health center after Ian’s birth. A few months and several casts later, his feet are fully corrected and he has graduated to wearing a brace.

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Before long he will join his siblings running around the village, playing soccer and eventually walking to school. However, in much of the world disabled children are hidden away, isolated from village life, a source of shame and embarrassment to the family. Children who cannot walk properly often are unable to go to school, find work, or become productive members of society. These disadvantages are passed on to future generations, trapping families in a cycle of poverty.

Caroline is taking no chances. She is still careful to not draw attention to Ian’s feet when out in public for fear of the stigma it may cause. But her confidence is growing. When friends stop by her home, she is open about his clubfoot and states with utmost certainty, “I know very well that he will be healed.”

MiracleFeet believes that we can end the disability caused by untreated clubfoot.

Working closely with our partners and the Global Clubfoot Initiative, we have developed a detailed plan that maps out how to build the capacity for all low income countries to treat every child born with clubfoot. This approach, which builds on the Clubfoot Management System and the low-cost MiracleFeet brace, results in a permanent, sustainable and low cost solution. $100 million invested in developing clubfoot programs over the next 10-15 years has the potential to unleash future lifetime earnings of $25 billion every year – an extraordinary return on your philanthropic investment!

When MiracleFeet started six years ago, we were excited to help 60 children in Brazil. Amazingly, that number has grown to 600 new children per month in over 140 clinics around the world. We recently reached the milestone of treating 20,000 children, reflecting the continued generosity of our supporters and the expertise and dedication of our local partners.

For every Ian, there are a thousand more children who will never run or kick a ball. Please consider bringing more young lives out of hiding by supporting MiracleFeet this holiday season. Thanks to a generous grant from a major foundation, every new donation this year will be matched, doubling the impact of your gift.

Your support will help us achieve our mission to treat every child born with clubfoot around the world. Thank you for giving kids like Ian a future.